The recently released study indicating the deep unpopularity of political correctness, as well as the marginal nature of both PC partisans and the hard right, carries certain implications for the ATS strategy and program. First, there is no need whatsoever to capitulate or kowtow to PC, and that the strategy that I have been pursing for years now of bashing PC to the max is a winning strategy (in fact, it’s probably brought me a larger audience than anything else I have ever done). However, a second implication is that the far left and far right are only peripheral and unpopular elements that are soundly rejected by most Americans. But the catch is that the rival ruling class factions attempt to build a loyal base for themselves by pandering to far left and far right extremists. Therefore, those of use who are committed to an authentically revolutionary perspective must necessarily position ourselves as a radical center that not only rejects the ruling class in its entirety, but also rejects the marginal right and marginal left with equal fervor. When it comes to the Antifa, “anarcho”-Marxists, neo-Commies, PC progressives, Alt-Right/Lite, WN/NS, neo-fascists, or religious theocrats, our attitude should simply be, “Fuck ’em. We don’t ’em.” Instead, our target audience should be the “exhausted majority” who are tired of both ruling class malfeasance, and the crap on the margins.
Kyle Kulinski offers a good critique of why right-wing critics of the Left typically fail, but regrettably Kyle merely wants to steer the conversation toward his own Berniebro/neo-Rooseveltian perspective.
These Tucker Carlson-types are pretty good at criticizing the Left. But they regrettably use their critique to steer their audience toward the Republican-oriented right-wing. It’s possible to hate Bolsheviks without wanting to preserve the Tsar.
Read the study here. It’s excellent.
The study confirms two things I had previously thought. One is that PCers are a small minority that is largely concentrated among mostly white, affluent, educated professionals (the left-wing of the upper middle class). The reason they’re so loud is because they tend to be concentrated in areas where they have a platform (media, education, entertainment, left-wing of the professional class, the public sector bureaucracy, corporate PR offices, left-wing clergy, etc.) The second is that hardcore partisans in the other direction are a small minority as well (notice that while “progressive activists” are 8%, the “devoted conservatives” are only 6%). The “culture wars” represent a rivalry among the elite (“old money,” Sunbelt industries, and right-wing Zionists vs the techno-oligarch/new clerisy alliance), with each faction reaching out to far right and far left extremists in order to build a constituency for themselves. This is why for 20 years I have been saying that anarchists, libertarians, and other radicals need to abandon “culture war” politics which merely feeds the objectives of different ruling class factions. The Left has been almost completely bought off by the techno-oligarchs/new clerisy (with the exception of some far left anti-imperialists). And the Right has been almost completely bought off by the right-wing of the ruling class (with the exception of some extreme rightists who reject the current system).
By Robby Soave
Except among a tiny minority of far-left Americans, political correctness (P.C.) is deeply unpopular. Some 80 percent of people said they viewed P.C. excess as a problem.
I bash John Bolton on Iranian television.
By J.D. Tuccille
After last week’s hearings on Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh, it became pretty obvious that the questions, answers, tears, and grandstanding had changed few, if any, minds. “Today felt very much like an update of the 1850s: 2 very distinct parts of US that no longer care to even fake that they respect or value the other,” tweeted Ronald Brownstein of CNN and The Atlantic.
The 1850s? We know how that ended: badly. Why not head off continued conflict by letting these “very distinct parts” of the U.S. be even more distinct—so much so that there’s less for them to battle over. We could even break with the past and try political solutions that let people live side by side without submitting to the authority of opponents they neither respect not value.
Brownstein wasn’t the only observer to notice the political breach—a breach that appears to be growing.
“It is hard to believe that Democrats and Republicans were watching the same hearings,” the YouGov polling firm marveled while reporting that Democrats disbelieved Kavanaugh and believed Ford, his accuser, in almost exactly the same numbers that Republicans disbelieved Ford and believed Kavanaugh.
By Yascha Mounk
James A. Lindsay, Helen Pluckrose, and Peter Boghossian, the scholars behind the hoax.
Over the past 12 months, three scholars—James Lindsay, Helen Pluckrose, and Peter Boghossian—wrote 20 fake papers using fashionable jargon to argue for ridiculous conclusions, and tried to get them placed in high-profile journals in fields including gender studies, queer studies, and fat studies. Their success rate was remarkable: By the time they took their experiment public late on Tuesday, seven of their articles had been accepted for publication by ostensibly serious peer-reviewed journals. Seven more were still going through various stages of the review process. Only six had been rejected.
We’ve been here before.
Kyle Kulinski of Secular Talk has a pretty good critique of Tucker Carlson, and Trumpism generally, that I think is largely accurate, although I disagree with Kulinski’s embrace of Bernie Sanders’ neo-Rooseveltian perspective as the fallback position, and Kulinski clearly does not criticize the Left strongly enough, and is too dismissive of immigration critics, which involves issues that are far more complicated than what he recognizes.
An interesting discussion of N-A on reddit. Not sure if others here have seen it. It’s interesting in places, along with a lot of the usual stuff. Read it here.
The key issue in these debate is should anarchist be limited to leftists only, or does anarchism transcend the usual left/right/center categorizations? I think everyone knows my position. Some of the comments in that thread remind me of this skit from SNL:
Two, three, ten thousand, a hundred thousand, one million Cherans.
I recently gave an interview to a left-anarchist podcast. While they decided not to post it, there is a discussion of it on this podcast. The relevant part starts around 19:30 and the part about our interview starts around 26 minutes in.
Welcome to the Anews podcast. This is episode 77 for August 17, 2018. This podcast covers anarchist activity, ideas, and conversations from the previous week.
By Keith Durant
The National Endowment for Democracy (NED) was founded in 1983 after being conceived by President Reagan and ex-CIA Director and then Vice-President Bush. It was created to take the place of the CIA after it’s fall from grace and worldwide condemnation for attempted of accomplished coups in many countries on 4 continents.
It was decided that a Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) would keep America’s hands clean and could still accomplish all of the same goals.
In a White House memo it’s goals were stated quite plainly. “We need to examine how law and Executive Order can be made more liberal to permit covert action on a broader scale, as well as what we can do through substantially increased overt political action.”
At the March 1990 NED board meeting, President Carl Gershman called the “victory of the democratic opposition in Nicaragua… a tremendous victory for the Endowment as well.” The board minutes continued:
By Nicky Reid aka Comrade Hermit
Exile in Happy Valley
I haven’t always been an anarchist but I’ve always been a radical. After being raised in the pro-life movement I discovered the Communist Manifesto as a 14 year old lapsed malcontent. I didn’t understand every word of it but the inflammatory anti-clerical rhetoric lit a fire in me that never went out. After spending several years as a teenage anarchist, influenced in equal measure by Subcomandante Marcos and Johnny Rotten, I turned to state socialism, inspired by the bold anti-imperialist antics of Hugo Chavez and the Bolivarian Revolution. It was also around this time that I became enamored by tales of the Bolsheviks, Che Guevara, and those dastardly Castro brothers. Marxist-Leninism and Democratic Centralism made sense to a twenty-something closeted agoraphobic. Like my life it felt preserved in formaldehyde. It felt safe.
But there’s nothing radical about safe and when I came out of the closet to take my life back from mental illness and gender tyranny, I was ready to dream dangerously again. The suspiciously early demise of Hugo Chavez followed shortly by the cataclysmic failure of his signature revolution was the final straw. Chavez did everything right but when he dropped dead the revolution dropped dead with him. For me, that was the last nail in the coffin for state socialism or state anything for that matter. I was drawn back to anarchism by the unexpected triumph of the Rojava Revolution in Northern Syria and the prison writings of the man who inspired it, another post-Marxist anti-statist named Abdullah Ocalan. But I’ve remained both conscious and unapologetic of my tangled radical roots and my objectives have always remained the same, the creation of a classless post-capitalist society.
The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights published a report about Venezuela on August 30 explaining that the country’s situation is the result of an economic war, a financial blockade and a media attack that reinforces a supposed ‘humanitarian crisis’.
In episode 9 of Unraveling Political Theory, welcoming back Tim and Keith from a temporary absence, they will be discussing Trump’s foreign policy and the idea of globalism. They discuss Zionism and Israeli influence on US policy, China and the ongoing geopolitical battle with the US, and the many political dynamics at play within the Trump administration. Coming to terms with different political movements and what they represent is at the core of what this podcast is all about.